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November 04, 2005



Heh..Niters, honey..

JM Hanes

tops -
"You'd say ... I NEVER spoke about my wife! Period."

Every disclaimer Wilson has ever made has had a similar odour. His most successful technique is to avoid responding as himself in favor of referencing a 3rd party, whether appropos or not. It goes something like "If I were lying, why would Vanify Fair be putting me on their cover?" I remember the first time I realized that he'd started toting his reading glasses into interviews so that he could read from other people's articles about him.


okay...gross negligence on the attorneys part---he specializes in internet?---but that he did it 2ce (heh) and it was run through WND legal ...

"The earlier version appended additional e-mails that were not intended for you and I would ask you to discard them, please," he wrote. "Specifically, you do not have permission to re-produce or quote from those e-mails sent to you in error. The authors of those e-mails retain all rights in those communications, including copyright and rights under applicable privilege law. Please be advised that your use of those e-mails in any way will compound your liability for the publication of the libelous statements which prompted my letter."

HAH! What the hector is libelous about reprinting something that was sent to them!

HA...some internet attorney, I think my earlier ideas of Wolf hold...he has been pounded by a client that does not understand that he is the one in legal peril...no control....and so client has gone out (EGO) and FUBARD'd any chance!


His most successful technique is to avoid responding as himself in favor of referencing a 3rd party,

It is most interesting you point that out...there is a recent poster that has a remarkable prescience and tenor...TM took note!

Also, what's great about Wilson's email...it can't be REFRAMED, he didn't know it would be seen! HAH


I remember the first time I realized that he'd started toting his reading glasses into interviews so that he could read from other people's articles about him.

dignified commentary aside..GAG. Super GAG. and GAG again.....

HE DOES do this stupid, let me put my glasses on an READ to you...the infernece...you're tooo STUPID to comprehend it right, so, I, Thurston Hall, I mean Wilson Hall the 4th can explain it to you....Lame Stream Media does not even get that they are just so worked by this guy.

He is a tricky MOFO but...um ...not that.


Oops, I meant JM on that last one! But ,TM has rights to them all!

JM Hanes

tops -
"Please be advised that your use of those e-mails in any way will compound your liability for the publication of the libelous statements which prompted my letter."

LOL! We wouldn't be making it up as we go along here, would we? Not that I'd be foolish enough to condemn such practices, out of hand....

BTW, TM does not want to own the messages posted here, and if he hasn't said so somewhere on his blog, he probably should.


Just a prediction on the Vallely story. The NYT will make its first report as an attack piece on Bush and Libby.


It's almost suicidal. In charge, or dead. Why can't they just report?


The Sulzbergers have always claimed that the truth is more important than money, and adherence to that claim has provoked a golden stream of both. However, the truth is, unearned power is even more likely to corrupt than unearned money, and the sooner they figure that out the more likely they get to keep both.


I am still guessing that the editors are going to have a problem with Judy Miller's forgotten Valerie Flame notebook. My guess is that they waved her off of the story because they had already waved another reporter off of the story. That other reporter probably talked to the editors, Wilson and Libby.


TP, I'm a simple person and may not have grasped what you meant, but for a long time I thought Juy had gone to jail to keep from disclosing that it was she who told Libby.I noe think that those references in another part of her notebook are to gossip she picked up in the office about Plame.

I do so love this Vallely story.

I still don't know why Wilson stupidly made it a bigger story than it was.

I do think he realizes that in the public mind Vallely has a lot of credibility and this tidbit makes him look even worse .OTOH he may have repeatedly told Fitz (as he told the public)that he never, never told anyone his wife was in the CIA.


I love the Vallely story also. I wonder how long the cable outlets save the video tapes of the people sitting in the green rooms.
I just don't think Joe can't help himself. I think he really believes he is a hero (and he is to some) In the end, he is a tar baby for Kerry also. I wonder how long the Missus will put up with this. All of this public scrutiny must be hard for someone who chose to spend her life in the shadows.


Kerry Sistah Souljah'ed him laster July, silently; now just as silently, and sickly, his embrace him.


The NYT will make its first report as an attack piece on Bush and Libby.

No Doubt....I instantly thought the same thing, that is if it even MAKES the NYTime.

But expect Wilson, to pull out his Dem Talking Point that says to decry every truthful thing said about him as the Republican Talking point smear noise machine.

Wilson challenging Vallely is like an Ant calling for a duel with a Rhino.


Do you suppose the press will continue to treat him kindly? Or has he proven to be just their useful idiot and now been discarded?Was his mournful tale on the alphabets his final lap?

For a narcissist like him being reduced to playing starring roles only in Conyers Playhouse Hearings would be quite a letdown.


I said that the current outcome, indictments but no indictments for outing, was the worst possible outcome for Wilson....for this very reason.

He feels compelled to be on every show that will book him ---to spin the results -- but he compounds it with more dishonesty....I think it was Blitzer? that he kept repeating 'oh yes well this is fine Wolf, because no we know Rove gave Copper the name..."

NO HE DIDN"t and Fitz knows this, and Wolf knows this and on and on...so Wilson just provokes the eire of people who are fed up in hearing this man lie....I knew he should have stayed off the shows and out of media light.


forgot...no indictments ---the story would have died completely and at least saved Joe Wilson from himself.




I wonder if, at some point, the lawyers for NYT, Time and NBC don't tell them to shut up. If that happens, Wapo, Newsweek, ABC and possibly, CBS (under new management--the new guy there might cover this as a sports story) plus the usual conservative suspects will eventually savage them. It is just a different dynamic than we have had for the past 2 years. Aspens turning?


For a narcissist like him being reduced to playing starring roles only in Conyers Playhouse Hearings would be quite a letdown.

I think that is what started this whole affair. When admin started referring to the story they were swatting away the notion Cheney SENT this guy (the lie the media LOVED so much) and Wilson panicked...if they find out Valerie helped and it was NOT Cheney...MSM would drop him like a hot potato...for getting their hopes up by lying about Cheney

He does get paniky...


oh no...I left a tag open....sorry /i>





out, out, damn italics.



Great minds and all that stuff. :)


And coming up nest--The Ct of Appeals for the D of C just ordered the reporters to testify in Wen Ho Lee's civil case charging that officials in the DoE and FBI breached the Privacy Act in blabbing about his case--and CNN,NYT, AP etc. have been forced to testify.(Pincus case on separate--common law, not Constitutional grounds--still apparently pending.)

Two cases in a row in which I think the evidence will show the media carried the Dems water. (In the latter case the "sources" were trying to wither deflect from the DoE shortcomings in securing Los Alamos or, more sinisterly, tryng to tag Ho to muddy the waters as to how the Chinese learned our nuclear secrets.)
I'm stocking up on popcorn.


...shame on me, I left the tag open...wish I knew how to fix...

here is more about Vallely:

----Paul wrote me that Wilson had bragged of his wife the "CIA desk officer" to Paul and all other ears in the green room at Fox News in D.C. in the winter spring of 2002. Paul said Wilson was open and noisy about his wife - and that Paul's Agency and State and Army pals in D.C. often met the Wilson's at shindigs and so forth, where Joe Wilson was self-promoting and his wife, at his side, was not reticent to have Joe Wilson speak of her as a "CIA desk officer."------

...alright, this pretty much illustrates the crisis in media Andrea Mitchell predicted...the MSM have been F'ing LIARS about the Wilson's and they know it...MSM lies or twists all sorts...but this story...

This story...they've all been quite about what they all know is true...that VICTORIA worked for the CIA...either to help Wilson or cover their own asses...and they have no business covering for anyone or anything


They did the same thing in promoting Massey's lies about war crimes when a simple check with their colleagues embedded with his unit would have established his claims were false. http://www.stltoday.com/stltoday/news/stories.nsf/stlouiscitycounty/story/56CC420E23027E0D862570B0007200BC?OpenDocument

Credulous,partisan, or careless? I know where I come down on it.


hee hee

Goldberg is posting in the Corner



Hope Hume picks it up on Monday's show--LOL

Cecil Turner

pollyusa: The Tenet statement is dated 7/11/03, 5 days after Wilson went public.

I think May 6 is a better "went public" date (and certainly no later than the June Epic speech). Tenet's response was a couple months late, and several dollars short. ISTM the continuing CIA leakfest is the real story here . . . the Administration's clumsy response is the sideshow. (And sorry for slow responses, I'm on a trip right now and can't keep up.)


Bitch and moan about the fact that Wilson said Cheney got his report, and Cheney denies it -- but stop with the lie about Wilson saying Cheney sent him. It didn't happen.

Maybe it was soemthing in the water, then, or something in the Kristof column - hee is Chris Matthews with Sen J Rockefeller on July 9, 2003, *after* the Wilson op-ed cleared the air:

MATTHEWS: Let me go back to David Gergen on the question of who may be culpable here, because we do have a paper trail, thanks to Joe Wilson, the ambassador. He said he was sent to Niger, the government in Africa that is in question here. There we have a picture of him. He was on "MEET THE PRESS". He also wrote a letter, an op-ed piece for the "New York Times" this weekend.

He made it very clear he was sent down there at the behest of the vice president's office last year. Months, almost a year before the president's State of the Union Address, he came back with the information that there was, in fact, no deal. Isn't vice president's office responsible, right now, to come out and say why they didn't act on that information? Why the CIA, which also must sign off on presidential speeches, they didn't come out with the information and clear the president so that he wouldn't have to, in his own words, by the way, to use his words, revise history as he seems to be doing, saying that this was not a mistake.

GERGEN: Chris, it was my understanding that he went to the -- to Africa at the request of the CIA, not the vice president's office. Vice president's office was...


MATTHEWS: At the behest of the vice president's office, the CIA was tasked by the vice president's office to do it. Senator, isn't that right?

ROCKEFELLER: That is correct.

GERGEN: Well, I thought what he said in "The New York Times" was -- in his piece, was that he was asked by the intelligence agencies for whom he had worked, they paid his way. He went pro bono in terms of his...


MATTHEWS: At the request of the vice president's office. Right, Senator?

ROCKEFELLER: Absolutely correct.

GERGEN: Well, if that's the case, if there is a paper trail back to the vice president's office and if there were papers filed with the vice president's office, that's one thing. If it was filed with the CIA, that's quite another. And I think we should be -- I certainly accept Senator Rockefeller's characterization of the facts here, but I -- my understanding was that he was a former head - that he was a former state department person...



GERGEN: ... who had done CIA work...

MATTHEWS: ... he was a former (UNINTELLIGIBLE)

GERGEN: ... and he was reporting to...

MATTHEWS: That's technically how it happened. Let me ask you the big question, gentlemen. I want to get into a very important -- A lot of people watching right now may say, so what. A lot of people may say this is wild, especially the critics of the war. But, those who supported the war, what does it say to them? Senator?

Let's put it this way - Libby and Co had a reasonable belief that their side of the story needed telling, and that lots of folks believed a different version. Whether that was due to Wilson's lies, or ear wax problems for Pincus, Kristof, Judis and Ackerman is a matter of opinion.

Polly - I am not ignoring your point that the WH enouraged folks to checkout the origins of the Wilson trip, but I am scoring it as a "so what"?

E.G. - WH flak - "You won't believe my self-serving denials anyway when I tell you Cheney was not involved, so ask the CIA and get their story".

And (Russian novel time) the Andrea Mitchell quote from Jul 8 shows she did exactly that, and was told by high level CIA folks that low level CIA operatives cooked up the mission and sent Wilson.

Mission Acomplished (for WH flack), without mentioning the wife, or leaking classified info about a trip.


Cold water - I don't want to pretend to be an expert on whether everyone in a green room ends up on the same show, but - my poor man's Lexis searhing does not put Vallely and Wilson together on *any* news show with a transcript from Jan 2002 to June 2003.

That does not prove they did not meet, but it makes it harder to prove they did.

Well, if it was easy, anyone could do it - for the rest, we have Clarice.



AJ has these...

Well, when was Wilson possible in the Green Room with Vallely? In reverse chronological order:

January 10th, 2003 (Vallely, Wilson). Wilson was on John Gibson’s show this day. Which is why Gibson has similar recollections to General Vallely. Vallely was on Cavuto which airs right before Gibson’s show.

November 18, 2002 (Vallely, Wilson). Vallely was scheduled for 1:10, Wilson was to be on after 3:00 PM.

October 1, 2003 (Vallely, Wilson). Wilson was on Fox and Friends in the morning, Vallely on Cavuto. Depending on when Vallely came in to tape his section they could have met up.

September 12, 2002 - they were on the same show at 3:00 PM.
August 20, 2002 (Vallely, Wilson). Wilson was on Greta and Vallely on Cavuto. Depending on when/if things were taped the could have run into each other.


I think October he meant 2002


Oh, the obvious, tedious next step - track down the Vallely appearances on Fox, and cross check with the Wilson Fox gigs. If they appeared on the same date, maybe they were in the studio for different shows.

If not, it gets even more puzzling...


and also, it is in Wilson email that he acknowledges seeing Vallely at FOX, it is the timeline he disputes...i think


Brilliant work, TS--I thought it wouldn't be necessary to show them on the same program to establish they'd been in the green room together. Why not send your research to WND? I think they'd be appreciative of your fine work.



I can only take credit for quick cut and paste...AJ Strata did this...

September 12, 2002 - they were on the same show at 3:00 PM.



I see it is AJ who found it. I can't register to blog at his site. Will someone get him to send it to WND ?


Oh, heck, I'll do it.


I did.



JM Hanes

clarice -
Sorry, WND = ?


Now they have TWO sources..LOL


JM World Net Daily. They're the ones running with the ball on it today.

Tom Maguire

After searhig 2002, I am finding several same day appearances, but Sept 12, 2002 is the best overlap:

Here is the Lexis search on Fox News and Paul Vallely for that date:

Video Monitoring Services of America - 77 words - 09/12/2002
Video Monitoring Services of America

Studio B

September 12, 2002, Thursday


FoxNews Channel Cable Programming




...Interview - Major General PaulVallely, retired, FoxNews Military Analyst, says...

My Lexis for Fox and Joseph Wilson gives me, and I am typing from the printed page here,

"Studio B

Sept 12,2002 Thursday


Fox News Channel Cable Programming




Pretty close, yes?

Other same day, different show:






Wilson's first appearance on Fox that I find is 8/15/2002.


Now this could be interesting...AJ has links to the various shows that detail all the guests

On the show they appeared the same time, there is another retired military fella (and I think on the person that runs the EPIC outfit, who would go down in flames vouching for Wilson)

Okay...so....one could start querying around these peeps, and also the other military sources Vallely offers at shindigs and cocktail parties...

so start rounding up quite a big group of military types, etc. ---this group is harder to smear credibility wise...and they are more apt to come out and support/protect Vallely---that are agreeing that Wilson outed his wife...

so now, after a 2 year investigation, that Wilson has spent telling what a grave national security crisis this is for us, he has to be the one telling us how wrong he was about that!!!

And who knows what Fitz does...he is left standing there...scratching his head?


support/protect Vallely

I meant, IN support


Very good , Tom..Who'll send that to news@worldnetdaily.com?

What an embarrassment this will be for the FBI..Clowns.


I guess the fact that Vallely lied about Wilson telling him in "February or March 2002" has fallen directly into the wingnut memory hole, huh?

Vallely lies, Wilson says "Vellely is lying and I can prove it because he says it happened in Feb. and March, and I wasn't on the tube until that summer."

And the wingnut-o-sphere goes Lexis crazy, verifying WILSON's story, and pretends that it verifies Vallely's story!



So, it was January--not Feb or March, toss him in the clinker..LOL


January 10th, 2003 (Vallely, Wilson). Wilson was on John Gibson’s show this day. Which is why Gibson has similar recollections to General Vallely. Vallely was on Cavuto which airs right before Gibson’s show. StrataSphere


Is there video or audio taken in these green rooms? Periodically, you see camera shots of people waiting in them.


I guess the fact that Vallely lied about Wilson telling him in "February or March 2002" has fallen directly into the wingnut memory hole, huh?

would that be the same whole as "the names were wrong, the dates were wrong" or "behest"???


HOLE...I meant.


P.Luk...um...lets see....do you tink it matters if it is March 2002 or November 2002?

I'll point out the obvious...2002... or rather......BEFORE July 14, 2003!


TP, I'd be surprised if cameras are regularly available in these green rooms. They are sort of decompression roome where commentators and interviewees can have a drink and something to nibble on while waiting to go on air.


I guess Vallely really is drawing a line in the sand
“I think he’s panicked that somebody -is going to take him on,-”


--Vallely lies, Wilson says "Vellely is lying and I can prove it because he says it happened in Feb. and March, and I wasn't on the tube until that summer."

HAH--what will he use, the SSCI report?


Oh what tangled webs we weave,
When first we practice to deceive.
But oh, how we improve our style,
Once we have practiced for awhile.

Hat tip to Emily Preyer.



Here's why this story is so wonderful.
Wilson's lie was so big and told so often and had such a simple Oprahish story line it is hard to rebut without gajillions of footnotes, references to official reports,etc. that it's hard to get across.

But Vallely is someone a lot of people have seen on tv as a fox commentator, he exudes an aura of quiet credibility and his story is simple.


From The Reality Based Community Dictionary:

Lied - the other side's guy gets any fact at all wrong, however minor;

Misspoke - my side's guy gets a fact wrong, however significant.


From Hoe's email"

"This is slanderous," Wilson wrote. "I never appeared on tv before at least July 2002 and only saw him maybe twice in the green room at FOX. Vallely is a retired general and this is a bald faced lie. Can we sue? This is not he said/he said, since I never laid eyes on him till several months after he alleges I spoke to him about my wife."

well, to be fair, normally one might say, how in the world can Wilson prove his side in a he said / he said?

So his point that they could not have met in that time frame would be a significant part of the response (although if it was *all* of his response, it would be pretty suspicious).

It also does call into question Valely's memory - just what is he remembering from the spring of 2002, if the first Wilson-Fox appearance anyone can find is Aug 2002?

OTOH, it hardly disproves the main allegation.



Was that a freudian slip?


It's a long long time from July (or August 2002)and July 2003..and there are plenty of times between those two points where the two might have shared the green room .Indeed, Wilson acknowledges they met there twice--July 2002 and only saw him maybe twice in the green room at FOX

AmI missing something?



NO... In my mind Wilson took the bait! He responded to it!....the more he calls Vallely a liar...the more people are apt to defend


defend Vallely...I can't wait to see the others coming forward confirming Vallelys assertions


*SNAP!!!* (sound of baited trap snapping shut)


My gues is that his lawyers tell Wilson to drop it, and this goes away - WND can't force him to file a suit.


You're way ahead of me TM. My nose is still stuck in my tort book tryng to figure out what cause of action Wilson has..LOL


If Fitz’s theory of the case is that it is about powerful people in the government lying about their attempts to punish a whistleblower, but is unwilling to pursue a case under any of the espionage acts, what is the Libby theory of the case? Could it be the following? Reporters and people like Vallely (not a reporter, but a military pundit) asked us in April and May of 2003 about why Cheney sent this guy Wilson to Niger. Initially, we had no clue as to why people were asking this. We heard from people like Vallely that Wilson’s wife worked for the CIA. We only passed along what we heard from reporters and pundits like Vallely, being careful not to pass along the classified stuff we eventually heard. In Libby’s case, his conversation with Russert was his first realization (“as if I had heard it for the first time”) that Wilson worked for the Kerry campaign and that this was a political hit. Could Russert have said “Wilson works for Kerry”.

I think Rove is a goner, whether or not he is prosecuted. This business about the White House sending the staff to “Classified Information Disclosure Retraining Camp” sounds a little like a Prosecutor suggested enforcement action which might mean the removal of Rove at a minimum.

Patrick R. Sullivan

Wilson (and his lawyers) is an idiot to continue to say he might sue Libby or Rove. With Vallely it's even worse. There's no cause of action 'absent malice'.

Further, Joe Wilson got rich off this controversy. There are no damages.

Rick Ballard


I thought that makeup was applied in the Green Room. If so, there may well be other witnesses able to verify conversations. Hearing someone declaring his wife to be a CIA agent would tend to be memorable. Gen. Vallely is a smart man and a smart man might have verified having a witness prior to making the claim.

Joe, me boy, we hardly knew ye.

Patrick R. Sullivan

If Wilson ever finds himself a competent lawyer he'll find out how Alger Hiss suing Whittaker Chambers ended up with Hiss serving five years in prison for perjury.

When you're deposed in a lawsuit the questions aren't asked by a Keith Olberman type, but by people who know how to interrogate a witness.


Rick--You may be right but I think the makeup/hairdressing stuff is done in side rooms.There are witnesses there, too, of course..Maybe it depends on the studio.

Yes to all that, Patrick.

TP I think that retraining business is just a standard management thingy. Everytime someone brings a harrassment suit, for example, big employers sign up one of those companies to retell every adult employee what he(or she) already knows about appropriate behavior. In their case it's a defensive measure to show how hard they've gone to do the right thing. In this case, I think it is pretty much the same. (That is, such behavior is not the practice of this administration, look how hard we tried.) Fitz certainly didn't require it or even ask it. He's a SP, not the WH procurator.


The timing question is interesting... As soon as somebody brought up "2002" I immediately said, "when in 2002?" because according to the Vanity Fair article, Valerie came home from overseas in (they are vague) something like April-July of 1997, and so early enough in 2002 would get Joe an IIPA charge.

But if Valerie had a 1999 W-2 form from Brewster-Jennings, then the 5-year window slides forward to at least the end of 2003 and some ways into 2004. My guess is that the existence of that form, and perhaps confirmation from the CIA that Valerie did covert work right before she got pregnant with the twins, was part of the classified material that convinced the judge to uphold Miller's subpeona.

But it also means that any disclosure by Joe up to the day of Novak's column gives him an IIPA problem.

cathy :-)


BTW Rick, only a boy person would think that women guests would agree to have their hair done and makeup applied in the middle of what is essentially a reception room. :^)



You are probably right. I am used to securities regulators. Sometimes, they like you a little better if you slap your forehead, say "DOH", and offer to do more training. Probably not a bad idea in any event.


Cathy, I don't think Joe would have an IIPA problem either because of the peculiar language of the Agee Act--but as to years, Wilson and Kristof seem to have a conflict (oh, please, do not ask me to make a credibility resolution between those two.)

"The federal code says the agent must have operated outside the United States within the previous five years. But Plame gave up her role as a covert agent nine years before the Rove interview, according to New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof. "Kristof says she stopped begin covert in 1994 when Ames outed her. http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=47248

WIlson seems to say it was in 1997 when they returned to the US .
(My guess is jivin Joe is slip sliding between being overseas and being overseas on covert assignment.)


Clarice - I know I have made this mistake myself (I recently had a weirdly fruitless Google search experience becuase of it), but it is Joseph C. Wilson.


Thanks, TM..I think I've been doing it wrong for days..OUCH


Here they come..

Lt. General Tom McInerney, USAF (ret), West Point '59, will join his colleague Maj. General Paul Vallely, USA (ret), West Point '61, on my show Monday 7 November (1005 pm Eastern Time on ABC Radio Network) to repeat and expand upon Vallely's memory that Joe Wilson more than once in 2002 in the green room at Fox New Channel in Washington D.C. boasted about his wife the "CIA desk officer." McInerney has the same memory and more, since both he and Vallely were on FNC between 150 and 200 times in 2002 each.

You will recall that Vallely received a threatening e-mail from Wilson's attorney Christopher Wolf on Saturday 5 November, demanding Vallely retract his remarks on my show Thursday November 3, and to WorldNetDaly.com on Friday November 4. Vallely has not such intention.

Included in the threatening e-mail was an attached e-mail from Wilson himself, calling Vallely's remarks "slanderous."

Also, I have written my regular correspondent Victor Davis Hanson to ask after his reported memories of Wilson boasting to him in a green room meeting that Wilson's wife worked at the CIA..."



ts--that is great news--McInerney is such a great guy...And notice how many times they were on that don't show up on a search.

The icing on the cake would be if they remember some reporters in there on one or more occasions when Wilson said that. HMMMMMMMM


Yes Clarice, especially if it turns out to be a left journo that sat on it!---it could be like a house of cards...and the more griping by Wilson, the more that are apt to come forward...Clarice, what in the hector would this do to Fitz? I mean if enough people were coming out and saying this and that...wouldn't he just like a fool? Would he expand his investigation? What?


The reporters do not want to testify, do they? Wouldn't it be in their interest to have as many people as possible--preferably highly visible people step up and say they knew..better yet, that they knew because Wilson told them..Best that he did this with lots of journos present..

This thing is the biggest hoax since Piltdown Man.

Rick Ballard

Thanks, Topsecretk9


We have toput in the data bank that everytime someon appears on tv, there may not be a record of that online--McInerney seems the kind of person with a good record keeping system. He probably has every appearance recorded in a daily appointment book.

Rick Ballard


Paystubs. It warn't for free.


Heh--WSJ Online has a good piece on the Libby defense strategy re reporters--boy, is this coming around to hit them in the rearend:
the battleground now is likely to be how broadly reporters can be questioned beyond their previous testimony before the grand jury. In talking to Mr. Fitzgerald, the reporters were able to narrowly tailor the topics they would discuss related to the leak of the CIA agent's name and Mr. Libby.

But legal experts say Mr. Libby's attorneys, like any attorney trying to impugn the testimony of a witness in a criminal trial, will likely try to blunt the prosecution by challenging the reporters on their other sources, their memories of events in question and their own reputations.

While the judge in the case, U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton, would be able to limit the grilling of witnesses to what is relevant to the case, criminal-defense attorneys say he will have to allow at least some questions that go to the credibility and professional ability of key witnesses, which in this case are the reporters. That could include performance reviews, corrections on previous stories and internal correspondence related to the reporters or their stories.

"It's Mr. Libby's right to a fair trial versus editorial privileges, and that isn't a close question," said one attorney closely involved in the case. "Most judges will say the right to a fair trial wins. ... We're over the hump of the identity" of secret sources, the attorney added. "Now we're talking about credibility" of the reporters.

"Even in criminal trials, courts have shown a willingness to restrict allowable testimony from reporters, finding there must be a balancing between the Sixth and First Amendments," said Theodore J. Boutrous, a Los Angeles attorney at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP, which is representing Time Inc., a unit of Time Warner Inc., in the leak case. "Most judges are more sensitive to the rights of journalists in a criminal trial setting than in the grand jury room. The scope of allowable testimony almost certainly will be an issue in this trial."

"It's going to be very difficult to keep the questions coming from Mr. Libby's lawyers narrowly focused on what [the reporters] told the grand jury," says Lucy Daglish, executive director of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, a nonprofit journalism organization in Arlington, Va. "In some respects, we start the First Amendment battle all over again."



Theodore J. Boutrous: "Even in criminal trials, courts have shown a willingness to restrict allowable testimony from reporters, finding there must be a balancing between the Sixth and First Amendments."
"Most judges are more sensitive to the rights of journalists in a criminal trial setting than in the grand jury room. The scope of allowable testimony almost certainly will be an issue in this trial."

I hope and believe this is just wishful thinking on the part of media attorney Boutrous. Perhaps in a case where a reporter was a peripheral witness, some weighing of First vs. Sixth amendment rights would be appropriate. But in a case such as Libby's, where the reporters are the primary prosecution witnesses, they should have no more rights than any other witness.


Why no third count of perjury in the Libby indictment?

The Obstruction of Justice charge alleges Libby interferred with the investigation by lying to the grand jury about his conversations with Russert, Cooper, and Miller. The Russert and Cooper accusations are echoed almost exactly in two perjury counts; however, there is no perjury count corresponding the Miller accusation.


(1) If the WSJ article did *not* mention the recent Wen Ho Lee rulings, they should have.

(2) I plan to post on the Novak-operative question, relying on that Andrea Mitchell quote.

(3) Somewhat unrelated, but folks do ask - if Ms. Plame was not covert, what in the orld did Fitzgerald spend almost two years investigating?

Two part answer - my guess is that covert agents never die, or at least, their status as one-time covert agents remains classified long after they retire and die. In MS. Plame's case, her status as a former covert agent was still classified, but her recent (five years) activities would not count under the IIPA.

Second part - Fitzgeral was quite clear in his press conference that he did not investigate to see if a statute was broken; he investigated to see what the facts were, with thte idea of fitting statutes to the facsts later.

Libby's obstruction (sand, eyes) made that impossible.

He also said she was covert - well, we'll see.

(4) I still *guess* that Rove's big problem is that he and Libby both said that Libby lied to Official A, and Fitzgerald does not believe anyone would dare lie to Karl Rove.



re (4) Libby lied to Official A

The assumption being that Libby said Russert told him something about Mrs. Wilson but Russert says he didn't do that.

Do you think that Russert on the witness stand will admit he doesn't remember? As I mentioned before, after rereading that transcript where he and Andrea were discussing this, it sure looks to me that Russert figured he didn't say anything about Wilsons's wife because if he had known anything at the time he would have told everyone else. He doesn't remember and just assumes what he would or would not have said to Libby.


OT- but since this comment #693

among the nags still bugging me, I still don't get the men in black poking around the neighbors at the final hour. I know the dotting eyes thing but, after 2 years? Intuition tells me that this takes place early on and um at least in the middle-say, when your waiting around for the reporters to get out of jail?

It bugs me for a couple of reasons. One, the indictments Fitz handed down were ready to go Feb. 2004 (or so we have been led to believe) 2- It appears that the revolve around Russert , not even really Judy (so she, as it turns out, was not all that necessary for the indictments) and 3- What pray-tell would Fitz do if say 2-5 neighbors said "yeah I knew she worked for the CIA" (at the end of the game)

There is just something screwy about it. If the counts he has have nothing to do with outing, then um why does it even matter if a few neighbors know?

I am sure there are better ways to articulate this...but does this not seem odd to anyone but me?


oh- and..

part of the reason I am thinking about the men in black...are these guys starting to come out and out Mojo Jo Jo...

If these guys don't matter, because of the no crime outing thing, then why the hector did Fitz make that part of the investigation a day before wrapping up (semi-wrapping, door still open, no?)

articulation lacking, but I think the point is in there somewhere



To take that one step further, even if General Vallely is remembering the spring of 2003, it is still ahead of the Novak column.



It goes away if Joe drops it, but not if General Vallely doesn't. WND might not be able to pursue, but Vallely can. I doubt he would, but if he really wants to pursue it, his own slanderous/liable suit against Mr. Wilson would keep it open.


TM I agree about the Wen Ho ruling--I've an article on it sitting on the editor's desk--these two cases are bad news for reporters who once carried water for a player in a dispute thinking they'd not be called to the stand.

When we discussed discovery we talked about the special problems in this case for the defense because, unlike most cases, the investigation was very limited as to the reporters and Fitz' notes (the FBI interviews and GJ record) would be far less than they'd be of normal witnesses..Libby's counsel apparently sees it that way, too, and in the discovery and trial will make a strong showing that the 6th Amendment requires the Ct give Libby an opportunity to go into more than Fitz did (i.e. the reporters indpendent knowledge of Plame and conversations with others.)



I guess it goes away, but since they are now appearing on a radio show I suspect they will now be asked to be on more and the more the word gets around...I just don't see how Fitzs' case has any credibility and so I don't get why he did a last minute half-ass neighbor query...what was the dang point?

(since he basically said he didn't need it)

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